es­sen­tial tips

PLAN­NING A NEW KITCHEN? TAKE NOTE!

Real Living (Australia) - - ROOMS -

1 Quick makeover

If time and money aren’t your friends, try a few cos­metic changes. “One of the eas­i­est and most cost-ef­fec­tive ways to add new life to an out­dated kitchen is to re­place the bench­tops,” says Jeneile Kirk from Ka­boo­dle Kitchens (Ka­boo­dle.com.au). Think timber, bam­boo, stone, con­crete, or DIY-friendly lam­i­nate.

2 Size mat­ters

For large, open-plan homes, Jeneile sug­gests go­ing for a U- or L-shaped kitchen with an is­land bench or, if you’re stuck for space, “a straight line kitchen is ideal for small, nar­row spa­ces, and of­ten the most in­ex­pen­sive lay­out type.”

3 Doors plus

Gloss, matte or wood­grain – the fin­ish of your doors plays a big part in the over­all look and feel of your kitchen. “Take sam­ple swatches home to see how they work,” Jeneile sug­gests. “You can also com­bine two tex­tures or colours on your base and wall cab­i­nets.”

4 Lo­ca­tion, lo­ca­tion

While chat­ting to kitchen ex­perts, you’ll no doubt hear the phrase “the work tri­an­gle” be­ing bandied about. “Ba­si­cally, it’s the dis­tance be­tween your cook­top, fridge and sink – where most kitchen tasks are car­ried out – and is de­signed to min­imise traf­fic and pro­mote ef­fi­ciency,” Jeneile ex­plains. “The most ef­fec­tive workspaces al­low 1200mm be­tween each of these sta­tions, which min­imises move­ment in the kitchen and in­ter­rup­tions to the cook.”

5 Ev­ery­thing in its place

“With your kitchen con­stantly on dis­play, con­ve­niently con­cealed stor­age is es­sen­tial,” says Jeneile, who is a big fan of drawer cab­i­nets. “With the ad­di­tion of cut­lery trays and di­viders, they al­low you to eas­ily sep­a­rate – and lo­cate! – uten­sils and cook­ware.”

6 Get a han­dle on it

Don’t for­get the smaller fix­tures, es­pe­cially if you’re keen to trial a new trend with­out over­com­mit­ting. Ac­cord­ing to Jeneile, things like tap­ware and han­dles are es­sen­tial for “adding an el­e­ment of style and stream­lin­ing your look”.

7 Let there be light

Work­ing with sharp knives and around hot sur­faces re­quires top-notch light­ing! Make the most of nat­u­ral light by build­ing shelves and cab­i­nets around your win­dows, then add down­lights or pen­dants to fur­ther il­lu­mi­nate your sink, benches, pantry and stove ar­eas.

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